It’s now perfectly legal to break into a car in Tennessee — as long as you’re trying to save a pet.
A new state law protects people from being sued if they free an animal from a hot car.
Even though 16 other states have some protections for animals left in parked cars, Tennessee is the first to extend its “Good Samaritan Law” to protect people trying to help animals.
The law in Tennessee was passed after a Georgia man was arrested in that state for breaking a car window to save a dog in distress. The car’s owner later dropped charges against him.
Hopefully, the law will make people think twice before leaving their pets locked in hot cars while they run errands.
On an 85-degree day, the temperature in a parked car can reach 120 degrees in a half hour — even with the windows cracked.
Michigan State University tracks all the state laws protecting animals left in parked vehicles. Most have penalties for people who leave animals in hot cars, but Tennessee is the first to offer protections for people who come to their rescue.